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Sports news with a Vegas perspective.

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    09/07/2011 10:47 PM
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NBA Playoffs Game 2 Boston Celtics at Atlanta Hawks Odds, Start Time, Free Pick

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The first round of the NBA Playoffs continues on Tuesday as the Boston Celtics travel south to take on the Atlanta Hawks in game 2 of their series. The game is scheduled for a 7:30 pm start time and it will be televised live Locally. Currently the odds have Atlanta favored by 4 points with the total sitting at 172.5 points for the contest. 

Free Analysis: The Boston Celtics not only dropped their first game against the Hawks on Sunday, but Boston lost the services of one of the best point guards in the game for tonight's match-up as Rajon Rondo has been suspended for one game for bumping an official. The Celtics were manhandled by the Hawks throughout game one, and hopefully for Boston the Celtics can use that as inspiration for Tuesday night's game. Boston allowed 31 first-quarter points, but then really buckled down and gave up just 52 points over the final three quarters. SG Avery Bradley will be called upon to fill Rondo’s shoes, but he had zero assists in 28 minutes in Game 1, making just 4-of-12 FG for 10 points and posting a -13 rating, the same rating as Pierce. PF Brandon Bass will need to stay out of foul trouble in Game 2. He had just eight points and five rebounds in 35 minutes before picking up his sixth personal in Game 1. Boston could also use a lift from its bench that combined to score just four points on 2-of-7 shooting. The Celtics were led by Kevin Garnett against the Hawks in game one as he overcame a slow start to finish with 20 points and 12 rebounds. The Celts will likely be without Ray Allen as well. Although Boston is only 12-15 ATS following an SU loss this season, the squad is an outstanding 22-14 ATS (61%) with one day of rest in between games. PF Josh Smith dominated the interior on Sunday with 22 points and 18 rebounds to help make up for Atlanta’s cold shooting of 40.8% FG and 66.7% FT (14-of-21). SG Joe Johnson was the biggest bricklayer, going 3-for-15 FG and 0-for-9 on threes. However, he still tallied a game high +24 rating and a team-best five assists. Atlanta’s starting backcourt of SG Kirk Hinrich and PG Jeff Teague each had a strong Game 1, combining for 27 points on 9-of-18 FG and 6-of-8 threes. They also contributed 10 rebounds, five assists and just two turnovers. Like Boston, Atlanta received very little from its bench, as their reserves combined to score a mere 17 points. Atlanta is a solid 21-18-1 ATS (54%) after an SU win, but only 18-23 ATS (44%) with exactly one day of rest. The Hawks are an impressive 6-1 overall in their last seven games, and the total has gone over in 8 of the last 9 games for Atlanta. The Hawks have also won five of their last six games at home. The Celtics are just 4-8 against the spread in their last 12 road games against the Hawks. 

Free Pick: I know a ton of people are on the C's and that scares me a bit, so I will do what I do best in the NBA and that's look at the total. This low of an OU line doesn't scare me at all when looking at the UNDER in this one. Boston allowed 31 points in the first quarter of game 1, but then they did what they do best and that's lay some defense. Boston allowed just 52 points in the final 3 quarters. This team really knows how to play some defense and they will really have to clamp down at that end of the floor if they are to win this one without Rondo. Also not having Rondo will mean a slower paced game by the Celtics. Boston has now allowed 83.6 ppg in their last 5 games, while Atlanta has allowed 94 ppg over the same stretch, but I don't expect this Boston offense to come close to that number. 3 of the 4 games between these teams pout up no more than 168 points (regulation only) and I expect this one to fall in the 160's as well. 


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MovieBetting Strategies: Hawks at Celtics
Host Marco D'Angelo and Pregame Pro Vegas Runner discuss their thoughts on how the books are going to handle this series as well as each team's strengths and weaknesses along with their personal predictions on who will win.